Player Profile: Jerrick McKinnon

By Jen Ryan
Jen Ryan

Position: RB
Drafted: 2014
Round: 3
Pick of Round: 32
Date of Birth: 05/03/1992
Height: 5'9"
Weight: 209 lbs.

When Adrian Peterson returned to football in 2015 he returned true to form and found himself as the rushing leader once again. He finished as the RB2 in fantasy football. Peterson will be 31-years old when the football season kicks off and carries and $11 million cap hit for the Vikings. While we all know he is not going anywhere we should still take a look at Jerrick McKinnon and what sort of fantasy value he may have.

McKinnon is owed a mere $610,000 from the Vikings season and much like Peterson, he also is not going anywhere. He is a lock for the backup position behind the aging, veteran back. In 2014, he competed with Matt Asiata for touches when Peterson was on the Commisioner’s exempt list. Last season, it was McKinnon who dominated those few touches awarded to the backups when Peterson was dinged up or was taken out for a change of pace. McKinnon had 78 total touches to Asiata’s 48. It is fair to assume that if Peterson were to miss time, McKinnon would be the next man up.

His numbers show some promise. He will be 24-years old when the season starts and does not have a ton of tread on his tires. Over his past two seasons, he has 218 total touches and is averaging five yards per carry. Last season he had limited usage in the passing game with 24 receptions but he hauled those in on 29 targets, which is good for an 83% completion rate. He also averaged over eight yards per catch. The sample between 2014 and 2015 is small, but there is promise.

Over the second half of the 2014 season, McKinnon registered an FSV of 64.9. Over that same span Sims registered an FSV of 88. They are similar backs in the sense that they are below bellcow backs on the depth chart, but Sims’ opportunities far outweighed McKinnon’s. In fact, a large portion of McKinnon’s second half production came during Week 17 when Adrian Peterson, like most studs headed to the playoffs, rested.

2016 Outlook: McKinnon has much more value in dynasty leagues than he does in redraft but that does not mean he is not worthy of one of your late-round darts. We already know Peterson will be at the top of nearly every set of fantasy football rankings but if he were to succumb to any sort of injury, McKinnon would be the back that everyone would be chasing off of their waiver wires. In Rounds 10-12 when you are taking chances, defense and a kicker, McKinnon is a player who should be on your radar. His limited opportunities reduce him to a stash player and cannot be considered as an RB2 or flex play as long as Adrian Peterson is healthy.